Shane Lowry delivered an Open Championship masterclass as he broke the course record at Royal Portrush with an eight-under-par 63 to take a four-shot lead into Sunday's final round.
The weekend may be without Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy after they both missed the cut, but Saturday did not go without it's drama. Irishman Lowry has brought the fans to life with a truly brilliant round, and after starting the day on eight-under-par, he recorded a bogey-free round of 63 that featured eight birdies to lead Tommy Fleetwood by four shots.
Brooks Koepka moved himself up to fourth place alongside Justin Rose and just behindJB Holmes, but Lowry's brilliance means they already find themselvesa long way off the lead at the start of Sunday's play. The R&A Has also announced that Sunday's tee times have been moved forward due to the threat of bad weather. Follow the latest updates below.
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Saturday tee times
0845—Francesco Molinari, Jason Kokrak
0855—Graeme McDowell, Bubba Watson
0905—Charley Hoffman, Ashton Turner
0915—Yosuke Asaji, Andrew Wilson
0925—Yuki Inamori, Matt Wallace
0935—Nino Bertasio, Tom Lewis
0945—Adam Hadwin, Ryan Fox
1000—Innchoon Hwang, Benjamin Hebert
1010—Paul Casey, Kyle Stanley
1020—Eddie Pepperell, Doc Redman
1030—Kevin Streelman, and Joost Luiten
1040—Shubhankar Sharma, Louis Oosthuizen
1050—Stewart Cink, Callum Shinkwin
1100—Jim Furyk, Kevin Kisner
1110—Bernd Wiesberger, Russell Knox
1120—Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Mikko Korhonen
1135—Sergio Garcia, Branden Grace
1145—Romain Langasque, Sang Hyun Park
1155—Patrick Cantlay, Lucas Glover
1205—Danny Willett, Aaron Wise
1215—Justin Thomas, Bob MacIntryre
1225—Matt Fitzpatrick, Ernie Els
1235—Thorbjorn Olesen, Thomas Pieters
1245—Rory Sabbatini, Byeong Hun An
1255—Rickie Fowler, Xander Schauffele
1310—Henrik Stenson, Webb Simpson
1320—Alex Noren, Dustin Johnson
1330—Tyrrell Hatton, Matt Kuchar
1340—Jon Rahm, Patrick Reed
1350—Lucas Bjerregaard, Tony Finau
1400—Erik Van Rooyen, Dylan Frittelli
1410—Andrew Putnam, Jordan Spieth
1420—Brooks Koepka, Justin Rose
1430—Justin Harding, Cameron Smith
1440—Lee Westwood, Tommy Fleetwood
1450—Shane Lowry, J.B. Holmes
Good morning and welcome to The Independent's live coverage from the third round of The Open!
We'll bring you all the latest updates and analysis from 9.30am, so make sure to tune in!
Right folks, Paul Waring is about to begin his round on his ones, but we all know that's not the real quiz.
Here's some of the tee times to look for...
08:45—Francesco Molinari, Jason Kokrak
13:30—Tyrrell Hatton, Matt Kuchar
13:40—Jon Rahm, Patrick Reed
14:40—Lee Westwood, Tommy Fleetwood
14:50—Shane Lowry, J.B. Holmes
The full schedule can be founds below.
Of course, there will be no representative taking part from Northern Ireland with the initials RM after Rory McIlroy was dumped out after missing the cut.
The pre-tournament favourite gave himself a one hell of a task after finishing the first day eight-over-par. With the cut off point one over, McIlroy began the day with three consecutive birdies as he battled his way back into contention, but fell just short of a heroic comeback.
“Part of me is very disappointed not to be here for the weekend,” McIlroy said afterwards.
“Yesterday gave me a mountain to climb but I dug in and showed good resilience. It’s going to hurt for a bit. I’ve been looking forward to this week for a long time. I didn’t play my part but everyone in Northern Ireland came out to watch me and played theirs.”
Read Tom Kershaw's full report from a dramatic second day at The Open.
Waring (+1) starts the day with a par on the first. No nonsense, nicely done sir.
This morning may be the most coverage Paul Waring ever gets before the main lot begin.
Bubba Watson will be getting underway very shortly, which gives you just enough time to read Tom Kershaw's exclusive interview with the king of on-course tears.
There's huge cheers as Bubba Watson lingers up to the first.
Slightly further up the course and Molinari and Kokrak (both +1) begin with par on the first.
Five players to watch on day three
Brooks Koepka has got several gears to move through
The hunt for winning 50% of his last 10 Majors is still on for Koepka and he has barely slipped out of second gear. The rest could be in trouble if he moves into overdrive this weekend. Koepka was five shots behind at this stage of the US Open last year and won, so won't be fretting about his Portrush deficit.
Jordan Spieth has been galvanised by the Open
Spieth has been in dismal form since finishing ninth in the 2018 Open. But he has fallen in love with Portrush, producing a sensational scoring burst early in round two. The 2017 champion has been stirred by links golf and the Open buzz, and senses he can emerge from his slump by regaining the Claret Jug.
Lee Westwood needs to try to stay relaxed
Lee Westwood does not take golf as seriously as he once did, practising less, smiling more, enjoying the twilight of his career without busting a gut in the quest for his first major. But after a carefree seven-under-par halfway total in the Open, can the relaxed mood continue for much longer?
Jon Rahm could deliver some weekend fireworks
Rahm did well to recover from an awful double-bogey on hole two yesterday to card an under-par second round - and the Irish Open champion is still in fantastic form. At this stage of the Irish Open the week before last, Rahm was in 38th place seven shots behind, and ended up winning by two.
Shane Lowry has overcome the worst side of the draw
The Irishman has been magnificent over the opening 36 holes. Lowry has won championships at Portrush and knows the course better than anyone on the leaderboard. He can deliver in front of home crowds, but can he handle the pressure of winning the Open with a nation willing him on?
Via the Racing Post
Bubba and Kokrak (both +1) suit and kick off by making par on the first as Waring (+1) doesn't drop a shot on the second.
It's pars all-round on the course at the moment. If the likes of Watson and Molinari are to claw their way back towards contention you feel they need to start racking up the birdies and chipping away at that score.
Ashton Turned jumps to two-over after a bogey on the first. Bleak.
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